Thursday, 13 June 2013

Day Zero Project: Update blog at least once a week

I’m am pleased to say that I have absolutely smashed this Day Zero target, by about 600%! You have to remember that at the time of writing this list I was only getting online once a week, on a Sunday, so to update my blog meant writing the post on the Sunday while I was at my in-laws’ house with an internet connection.

Then I started scheduling the odd post throughout the week and started trying to find a routine for my photo blog posts and my book review posts. There were a couple of times when I planned out a routine I might follow; a photo post on this day, a book post on this day, another sort of post on this day, but I always abandoned it because I didn’t think it would be practical.

Getting an iPhone helped because that meant I could post from home as well. We still don’t have broadband here but I can get a decent enough signal for updating my blog (even if I do have to put my phone on the shelf in the bathroom if I want to get a good enough connection to upload a photo). I also got a bit better at scheduling blog posts as time went on. Something that numerous NaNoWriMos have taught me is that I’m by no means a ‘pantser’, I need to plan what I write and blogging is the same.

I started keeping a little list in the notes section of my phone of things I could blog about and as of this year I was pretty successful at posting at least one thing each week. In fact I think I was averaging about three posts a week during January, which was definitely progress from my erratic, maybe-once-a-week-if-I-was-lucky posting style from before.

And then the A to Z Challenge came along.

I realise I’ve harped on about this Challenge rather a lot in recent months, but that’s because it really did change my approach to blogging. I’ve seen blogs that post every day but I never thought it was something I’d be able to do with my lack of an internet connection, these people were stay-at-home mums (so obviously have more time on their hands, please don’t shoot, that’s sarcasm, honest) who were infinitely more organised than I am so had fitted blogging into their uber-organised routines.

But I thought I’d have a go at planning blog posts and then writing and scheduling them every day, but without telling anyone, so if I failed no one would really know. I thought it would be good practice for April when I actually did need to post every day. And suddenly I had a routine. And my blog was getting updated every day!

I made a list in my phone of all the dates I wanted to post on (which was all of them, of course) and then things I wanted to post about, and then I wrote the posts. And suddenly it wasn’t such a huge challenge any more. Suddenly I had more posts than days in the month because I kept on finding things I wanted to blog about. Suddenly I didn’t have to use a list of prompts to come up with things to mention because real-life was supplying them for me.

And then April came and I didn’t want to disturb my routine so I blogged twice a day, which probably annoyed some of my followers but it was good fun, if a little bit tiring trying to write thirteen posts a week. Luckily I got into a routine of scheduling them so I was able to get well ahead of myself.

Now I’ve gotten pretty well organised and I even have spare posts which I’m writing which I don’t have dates for yet. They can just sit on my blog until I need them and then I’ll get them scheduled. Meanwhile real-life keeps giving me things to write about, other blogs I read give me ideas and so do the comments on my own posts. It’s nice to know that I’ve got people who read my posts and that I’m not just shouting into the ether.

Oh, and you know how I was never really able to get into a routine with my posts way back when. Have you noticed a pattern emerging: Sundays are my Project 52 posts, Tuesdays are book reviews, Thursdays are Day Zero Project posts and Saturdays are rapidly becoming film review posts. That happened by accident; it just sort of naturally evolved!

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